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Wales eased into the Second Qualifying Round of the UEFA Under-19 Championships with a
4-2 win over group hosts Slovenia.
A tight first half, during which goalkeeper Yvette Churchill impressed, looked like ending in a draw, until a long curving shot from Rachel Rowe hit the target just on half time, giving Rowe, who turned 18 today, something extra to celebrate.
After taking a 1-0 lead Wales came into the second half with renewed confidence, demonstrated by two goals in quick succession from Hannah Keryakoplis and Nia Jones. Slovenia, however, siezed the chance of a free kick, taken by Kristina Erman, to get a goal back in the 74th minute.
Welsh heads did not go down though and Sharla Passariello added a fourth goal just a minute later, thanks to strong support from substitute Lisa Bird. In an eventful few minutes, Slovenia were then awarded another free kick, and Erman's shot eluded goalkeeper Churchill for a second time.
With two wins under their belt Wales qualify for the elite round of the Championships, which will take place between 28th March and 3rd April 2011. Fixtures and mini-tournament hosts will be decided in a draw later this year.
In the other Group 6 match, France beat Georgia 11-0. Wales now face France in Stojnci on Thursday (16th September) in the group decider.
Wales under-19: Yvette Churchill, Ellis Parsons, Jasmin Dutton, Nia Jones, Leanne Jones (sub Hannah Daley 61mins), Josie Green, Rachel Rowe (sub Lisa Bird 70mins), Sharla Passariello, Emily Brown, Hannah Keryakoplis, Megan Wynne. Subs not used: Sophie Davies, Katy Maddock, Danielle Broadhurst, Bethan Woolley, Zoe Atkins.
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